Now in its second year, the Woodstock Community Unit School District 200 elementary school fundraiser is paying off by teaching kids about the importance of exercise as well as raising more than $15,000 for local charities.
Physical education teacher Rob Mecklenburg said District 200 schools used to solely raise money for the American Heart Association with the Jump Rope for Heart program, but a few years ago he and his colleagues decided they could also contribute to other local organizations and expand their activities.
Students did their own fundraising and participated in a fun day of activities over the winter from Gaga Ball and cup stacking to jumping, drumming and rolling through obstacle courses in their school gyms. This year, students exceeded last year’s fundraising total of just over $10,000.
“We are very confident that in a few short years this healthy and active fundraiser will bring $25,000 to the cause,” Mecklenburg said. “The best part of all is seeing where all of the money generated this year is going.”
Funds from this year’s Get Fit for a Cause activities were distributed as follows: $5,000 for the American Heart Association, $1,430 for Woodstock Food Pantry, $1,430 for Lurie Children's Hospital Chicago - Childhood Cancer Research, $715 for United Way of McHenry County, $715 for Juvenile Diabetes Research, $715 Turning Point of McHenry County, and $160 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
Each participating District 200 elementary school also receives a third of the proceeds for its school physical education programs.
“The elementary physical education team would like to say thanks to everyone being on board, listening and giving us the chance to improve on what was already working. Each and every one of these organizations we are donating funds to is very appreciative and said these funds will make a difference to their cause,” Mecklenburg said.